Submitted by Jim Hurley on Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 9:55 AM
'BRON, KYRIE SPARK CAVS TO 112-97 GAME 5 WIN AS "GREEN FACTOR" IS KEY
THE BASEBALL REPORT: THE SINGLE-MOST UNDERRATED AL/NL STARTING PITCHERS AT THIS POINT OF 2016
Hold off that celebratory parade, "Dub Nation".
The Cleveland Cavaliers scratched and clawed their way back into these here-and-now NBA Finals with a rock-solid 112-97 victory in Game 5 this past Monday night and so the series now not only shifts back to Ohio with the Golden State Warriors (up three games-to-two) still needing that one "W" to win it all - again - but with the Cavs seemingly energized by their dynamic duo.
Yes, LeBron James and Kyrie Irving became the first teammates in NBA Finals history to register 40-point performances in the same game - they poured in 41 points apiece while shooting a combined 33-of-54 from the floor (that's a 61.1 accuracy rate, folks) - as the road team won/covered for a second straight game in these Finals after home sides started out things 3-0 SU (straight-up) and 3-0 ATS (against the spread) in the opening three games of this best-of-seven set.
In case you're wondering, that makes NBA Playoff Betting Favorites 49-33-0 ATS (with two pick 'em games) for a swift .598 winning rate and the Las Vegas oddsmakers have installed the host Cavaliers as 2-point betting favorites for Thursday's Game 6 bash at Quicken Loans Arena.
Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers and Bloggers will continue to rake in major profits in this year's NBA Finals in Thursday's Game 6 from Cleveland - hope you've been with us right from the very start of these pro hoop playoffs, folks, because we've absolutely cashed in big-time! Go online right here at www.jimhurley.com or call our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 each/every day of these NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers and remember to cash in too with all the Major-League Baseball winners as Jim stays red-hot heading into summer!
NBA FINALS - CLEVELAND 112, GOLDEN STATE 97 - Warriors lead series 3-2
The one-game suspension of Warriors' F Draymond Green did indeed come back to bite the reigning champs ... or didn't you see how both James and Irving were able to operate when they drove to the hoop time after time?
Don't you think if Green was in there he would have served as a defensive deterrent and maybe even started some G-State fast breaks the other way with some blocked shots?
Okay, so no need to get into the controversy of whether or not Green should have been kayoed from Game 5 based on all those flagrant-1 and flagrant-2 foul "points" - no doubt the Cavs' management whispered into the ear of NBA Commish Adam Silver on those recent off days - but you do have to question the defensive efforts of the Warriors in Game 5 as folks sloughed off not only James and Irving but many Cleveland shooters and you wonder if what we said here in a Jim Sez column last week is true ... the longer this series goes, advantage Cavaliers after Golden State had to work so hard in winning that seven-game series against Oklahoma City.
True, Golden State's Klay Thompson (37 points in Game 5) and Stephen Curry (25 points) did exceed 60 points between 'em and that's usually a gauge that shows the Warriors won but the bench shot a woeful 5-of-20 - you always need an energy player or two off the pine and especially in playoff home games - and the fourth-quarter meltdown (see 13 points in the final frame for the Warriors) was a real head-scratcher unless you happen to believe tired legs was the cause of the shooting problems.
Game 6 is set for Thursday night ... and we'll have our Jim Sez Game Preview in our very next column.
Now, here's the Warriors-Cavaliers NBA Finals series in game chart form (all home teams are in CAPS below):
|6-2||GOLDEN ST.||- 6||Cleveland||104-89|
|6-5||GOLDEN ST||- 6||Cleveland||110-77|
|6-8||CLEVELAND||- 2||Golden St||120-90|
|6-10||Golden St||+ 2.5||CLEVELAND||108-97|
|6-13||Cleveland||+ 6||GOLDEN ST||112-97|
Wow ... we haven't had a single game in these NBA Finals decided by less than 15 points (see Game 1 and Game 5), so when (if ever) do we get to see a classic NBA Finals finish? Hmm.
Now, let's get you the up-to-date NBA Playoffs Pointspread Breakdown chart with just the two teams in this year's NBA Finals:
We're now a couple of weeks away from the halfway point of this 2016 Major-League Baseball season - a good time to let y'all know who we believe is the single most underrated starting pitcher in both the National League and the American League:
JASON HAMMEL, RHP, Chicago Cubs - Sure, the Cubbies charged out of the '16 starting gate with a bevy of wins that has 'em in complete control of the NL Central race and yet little "pub" has come the way of this veteran hurler. Consider that Hammel will enter his scheduled Wednesday start in Washington with a stat line that features a 7-2 record and 2.36 ERA with a dandy 1.11 WHIP. Hammel has surrendered just 52 hits in 68.2 innings and can we remind you that the Cubs are 9-3 in his first dozen starts this year? In other words, you're making the proverbial pretty penny when wagering Hammel through the season's first sixty-plus games.
COLBY LEWIS, RHP, Texas Rangers - One of the not-so-secret formulas that has gotten this team to lead the AL West has been rock-solid starting pitching but it's not all about LHP Cole Hamels, you know. The veteran and oft injury-prone Lewis is 5-0 with a 3.00 ERA and 1.08 WHIP and note Lewis sports a 54 K-to-17 BB ratio and the Rangers are 9-4 in games started by this unsung hurler. Heck, Lewis recently was a home dog against Houston (- 125) in a Rangers' 6-5 win earlier this month ... maybe it's time the Las Vegas folks caught up with 'em.
NOTE: Remember we'll recap Game 5 of the NBA Finals in the next edition of Jim Sez plus there's NBA Draft news these next two weeks and more Baseball News/Notes too comin' soon!